890 workers die in 5 years as power companies disobey safety code

890 workers die in 5 years as power companies disobey safety code

KARACHI: Adoption of safety codes and standards by power distribution companies in Pakistan remains low as 890 fatal accidents of employees and public occurred during last five years (2011-2016).

The distribution licensees reported around 226 fatal accidents of employees and public occurred in the year 2014-15, showing an increase of 15 percent over the previous year, said National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA).

The power regulator revealed that more than 100 fatalities of electricity Distribution Companies (DISCOs)' employees are occurring every year.

Nepra, considering safety as an important parameter for measuring the performance of DISCOs, initiated legal proceedings against the electricity DISCOs & K-Electric for not adhering to the safety code. Regarding this, NEPRA has been persistently advising DISCOs to take measures for ensuring the safe working environment and at the same time Safety Audits of DISCOs and K-Electric have also been initiated.

K-Electric claimed that it has adopted an unwavering commitment to excellence in Health, Safety, Environment and Quality (HSEQ) establishing a corporate HSE Department and formulated a Safety Policy. However K-Electric has not been able to control occurrence of such accidents rather it has reported an increase to 13 in 2015-16 as compared to 4 in 2014-15 while , generally DISCOs have either maintained similar results or were able to reduce accidents, added Nepra.

The Nepra said that the case regarding safety accidents/incidents occurring in all DISCOs and K-Electric for FY 2014-15 was taken up on an emergency basis. Accordingly, information regarding month wise fatal and non-fatal accidents/incidents affecting the employees and general public, action taken and/or to be taken, compensation given (if any) to dependents and detail of inventory devices, available in stores for the FY 2014-15, was obtained from DISCOs and K-Electric.

The Authority while showing serious concerns for not adhering to the safety code by the DISCOs initiated legal proceedings in the form of explanations and show cause notices against the concerned DISCOs.

Moreover, NEPRA has instructed all distribution companies to develop their safety manuals in accordance with the Safety Code. NEPRA also is in the process to make a joint safety working group comprising professionals of all distribution companies for promoting safety culture, development of uniform safety manuals, inter-companies safety trainings, and exchange programs of safety initiatives.

In last five years, Peshawar Electric Supply Company (Pesco) reported 122 fatal accidents, Islamabad Electric Supply Company (Iesco) reported 71 fatal accidents, Faisalabad Electricity Supply Company (Fesco) reported 121 fatal accidents, Multan Electricity Power Company (Mepco) reported 97 fatal accidents, Quetta Electricity Supply Company (Qesco) reported 50 fatal accidents, Sukkur Electricity Power Company (Sepco) reported 102 fatal accidents, Hyderabad Electricity Supply Company (Hesco) reported 86 fatal accidents and K-Electric reported 45 fatal accidents, making total of 890 accidents.



Published in Daily Times, July 11th , 2017.